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Occupational Lead Poisoning Prevention Program

Surveillance & Case Investigations

Laboratories are required to report the results of all blood lead tests taken in California to the California Department of Public Health (CDPH).  A blood lead test measures the amount of lead in the blood. The Occupational Lead Poisoning Prevention Program (OLPPP) collects these test results for adults (age 16 years and up):

  • Identifies serious incidents of lead poisoning in workers for investigation and follow-up to ensure that the worker receives proper medical care, that the sources of exposure at work are controlled, and that workers do not carry lead contamination home and poison their families

  • Determines how many workers in California may be lead poisoned, what industries they work in, and where they live and work

  • Provides information that can be used for designing and evaluating public health programs for preventing lead poisoning in high-risk industries

Surveillance and Registry Activities

  • Receive, compile, and analyze the blood lead level laboratory reports for adults

  • Refer serious cases of lead poisoning to OLPPP's case investigation team

  • Provide monthly reports to local health departments of workers in their area who have an elevated blood lead level to support local efforts to prevent take-home lead poisoning

  • Produce bi-annual data files for the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Adult Blood Lead Epidemiology and Surveillance (ABLES) program

  • Publish periodic reports that summarize the findings of the Registry

  • Respond to data requests from state and local health departments, health care providers, researchers, and others for more detailed information about lead poisoning in California

OLPPP Case Investigation Activities

  • Call lead-poisoned workers to address concerns about their health, learn about the workplace, and identify household members and co-workers at risk

  • Talk to employers to review companies' lead safety measures and make recommendations on how to control lead exposure

  • Contact doctors treating lead-poisoned workers to review the case and provide information and assistance


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